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What's for Dinner?! Shrimp and Grits...

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

What's for Dinner?! Shrimp and Grits...

I know you've all been waiting for this...and I'm sorry to make you wait ALL DAY long, but you weren't going to make it for dinner tonight anyways because you probably didn't already have all the ingredients. (And if you did, then you should know that I've just carved out a place for a shrine in your honor in my own well stocked pantry.)

So here it is....

No wait. First I have to tell you real quick that when I turned on the oven tonight to roast the broccoli, I'd forgotten to remove the awful oven liner that was destroyed from the potato fiasco just last weekend...and it stunk up my whole kitchen in the short time it took me to nurse the baby to sleep!  So, our lovely guests were welcomed with the scent of second-time-around burnt potato juice and olive oil mixed with a little Mulled Cider was can just imagine!

I have a bunch of pictures for you too tonight!  But you'll have to forgive me that the picture of the finished shrimp and grits was taken about an hour after it was freshly made, and it was in tupperware instead of all nice on the plate!  Cut me some slack though?  We had company and it'd have been weird to go whipping out the camera to take pictures of the know it would have been!

Ok, now this recipe is one of my all-time favorites for company because you can do really ALL of the prep work way ahead.  By the time your guests come you are really just tossing it all together, looking effortless as you do it, and then you serve them up a major flavor punch that's pretty to boot!

First...cut up your bacon and put it in a big ol' saute pan and make it perfectly crispy!  I did this part at 9:45 am today.  Wait...while we're here, I'll tell you that this pan below is the BEST pan I have EVER had...I use it for everything!  It's made by All-Clad and is probably 10" across with about a 2" side.  It cooks everything so well, but it ain't cheap.  And also, while you're looking below...the other kitchen tool I couldn't do without is that pair of kitchen shears.  Those are made by Cutco and they will cut through bone they are so good.  Again, these cost more than you think a pair of scissors should, but if you can outfit yourself with a small handful of bang-up kitchen tools, you'll be so glad you spent the money.  Plus, they last way longer that your Uggs will...and we know those were a splurge!

Ok, this other little picture to the right here is a little favor i do for myself with this dish as well.  While the bacon cooks, go ahead and measure out the garlic, lemon juice, and about a dozen or so drops of Tabasco and just put it in a tiny tupperware to add when you cook later.  Just saves time and makes it easier.  And YES...i cheat and use bottled lemon juice and pre-minced garlic!  After a year of smelling like garlic from when i cooked in a restaurant, i don't want to smell like it unless i am really counting on a fresh garlic flavor punch...i use the pre-minced stuff.  So sue me!

Next, make sure you slice your mushrooms with the same precision and perfection that i have shown below.
 Chop up your green onions/scallions while the bacon is cooking too.  I personally think that it's easier to cut when i leave the rubberband on the end for a little while.  It's also easier to cut with my right hand, but it was preoccupied in this picture with a camera...for your benefit.
I bet your bacon is done get it out and put it on a paper towel to get off some of the grease.  Pour out all but maybe a couple of Tbsp of grease from your pan... then shove your pan to cool at the back of the stove till dinner time.  See how i have my recipe stuff all ready for later now...bacon on a plate, onions in a bag, lemon juice mix in the tupperware, mushrooms perfectly sliced...and it's just 10:10am!
 Now that you've done that...measure out all your grits, cheese, and seasonings.  I put the grits and cheeses in zip-lock bags so i can just dump them in when it's time.  If you use tupperware, while it is more "green", it makes a bigger mess when you're cooking, and then you don't seem as impressive. I should also note in case this wastefulness makes any of my tree-hugger friends unhappy, I do in fact recycle the bags.

Peel your shrimp sometime during the day too...and put them in a tupperware so they're ready to just dump in.  I didn't figure you needed a picture of me peeling a, The Hubs would not be thrilled with me for holding a camera and peeling shrimp at the same time!  Shrimp juice....ewww...

So, you've prepped everything...put it all together in the fridge so you don't forget anything and then you can follow the directions below to impress your guests when you assemble it!

Now that dinner is pretty much done, you can go lie on the couch and eat bon bons...especially if you're a SAHM...because it's probably 11am by now and you have several hours of soap operas, bon bons, and nothingness to attend to until dinner comes around.

And for all my outside-the-home working friends, if you do all this prep before you head to work or the night before, then you can just toss it all together for a quick yummy meal!  I'm sorry though that you won't get to enjoy the soap operas and bon bons during the day... maybe your boss will let you have some during a break.

When i originally posted, i forgot to include pictures of the finished dish! they are!

So, without further it is...the actual recipe!

2 lbs peeled shrimp
10 oz bacon, chopped
4 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
3 cups sliced scallions (green onions)
2 garlic cloves minced
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
Tabasco, Salt and pepper, and chopped fresh parsley to taste

Rinse and pat dry the shrimp.

Chop the bacon and cook til crisp. Remove to paper towel to drain and reserve drippings in the pan.

Add the shrimp to the skillet and saute til they start to turn pink. Then add the mushrooms, scallions, and garlic.

Saute til the shrimp are cooked and the mushrooms are tender. Season with Tabasco, Salt and pepper, and chopped fresh parsley to taste. Toss the bacon back in with the shrimp mix. Serve over cheesy grits

Cheesy Grits recipe
2 1/2 c. water
2 1/2 c. milk (i put about 1/2 skim milk and 1/2 of it half and half...because those are what i keep on hand)
1 c. grits (i like to mix part yellow and part white)
1 c. cheddar cheese
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese (the shreddy kind is best, but i forgot to get that at the store, so i resorted to the powdered stuff...I can actually tell a difference though)
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp pepper

Bring the water and milk to boil in a pot and then add the grits. Stir them alot so they don't clump and when it thickens pretty well, then add in all the other stuff.


Serving up love and calories to you tonight,

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At January 28, 2011 at 9:44 AM , Blogger AA said...

Delicious, Logan!! Can't wait to try it out! And thanks for the pictures ;)

At January 28, 2011 at 1:23 PM , Blogger Logan said...

Ale!!! So glad you're stopping by! Hope you enjoy it...make sure to let me know how it turns out when you try it!

At January 28, 2011 at 4:23 PM , Blogger Kimberly said...

Paula Dean does something similiar with her Cheesy Shrimp & Grits (no bacon), but she adds spinach to the shrimp along with some heavy cream & wine. I've cooked for my parents' friends before and they were really impressed. Such an easy dish, but so full of flavor and filling, too. Glad your dinner was a success!

At January 29, 2011 at 4:38 PM , Blogger Emily said...

must try ASAP! Love you and your yummy goodness.


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